The Simple Christian Life
By Joseph Cartwright
The Christian Life has become a life of complexity for many believers. We are constantly given complex formulas for living out our spiritual walk. We have exchanged loving God and our neighbor for such things as rigid, overbearing discipleship programs. We have exchanged obedience to the commands of God for following after man's agendas. In short, we have exchanged simplicity for complexity and we have been found wanting. Remember what Psalm 23 says, "The Lord is my Shepherd, I shall not want." Our Shepherd is to be our ALL. Sheep follow their shepherd in simplicity and with blind devotion. Jesus, the Shepherd of our hearts, is calling us back to the simplicity of fellowship.
When we clutter our spiritual walk with unnecessary things we become smothered and diverted from our relationship with the Father. We tire easily and our joy is quickly lost. Our spiritual vitality and abundant life become mere shadows of the intention of God for our lives. Worse yet, we are easily deceived and fall into sinful patterns of life. Is this what God wants for His children? No, He clearly says, "For I know the thoughts that i think toward you, says the Lord, thoughts of peace and not of evil, to give you a future and a hope.
Let all who follow Jesus Christ unshackle themselves from the oppressive
complexity of formulaic fellowship of Jesus. Live a life of simple devotion and
obedience to Him alone. We must put aside our own agendas and take up our cross in simple fellowship. Walk with Him moment by moment and step by step.
He is the director of our paths according to Proverbs 3:5-6, but we must first trust, lean not on our own understanding, and acknowledge Him in all our ways. This means we must put our faith totally in Him. We must not seek understanding of His leading but simply obey. Lastly, we must acknowledge our need for Him in all we do. Then we will be in a place where God can direct our paths.
This idea of simplicity explodes the core of the legalistic and ritualistic
form of Christianity that many of us have embraced. A simple follower of Christ can't be tangled up in religious things because he is pursuing a relationship with a Person. Religion just doesn't satisfy but we try to make it work. It is time to give up our religion and embrace the relationship that God has provided through Jesus Christ. Quit struggling after man's religious ideal. Begin striving after God's relational reality. He is life. "I am the way, the truth, and the life." When you embrace Jesus, you embrace the fullness of life that he has called you to. Simply love. Simply listen. Simply obey. Simply follow.
Simply live in Him, abundantly.